Northern Arena accused of not paying players

In the latest esports accusation, the Canadian tournament organiser Northern Arena is being accused of owing several Dota 2 teams their beloved prize money.

Northern Arena is one of the biggest tournament organisers operating out of Canada. So far it has hosted tournaments in both Counter-Strike (Northern Arena Montreal 2016) and Dota 2 (Northern Arena BEAT Invitational).

According to the original report on theScore: “Team NP are owed $20,000 for their second place finish while Alliance are owed $4,000 for finishing in 5th-6th. compLexity Gaming are owed $2,000 for placing 7th-8th, and a representative from the organization alleges that, after asking for a payment timeline, they were told that they would be paid that day or week.

“Combined, the teams that confirmed they have not been paid yet are owed a total of $26,000. Northern Arena set a $100,000 total prize pool for the event.”

Online publication theScore reached out to Northern Arena CEO Carl-Edwin Michel, who claimed that while they have paid most of the teams, there are still some who have yet to receive their money. He further stated that payment arrangements have been made with those teams and that Northern Arena will “make good on [their] word and deliver even greater events this year.”

Northern Arena
Image courtesy of Northern Arena

Michel went on to note that the company is still a startup organisation and a lot of the money that they receive comes from sponsors, hence their inability to pay everyone back on time.

He commented: “We are a small startup company that relied heavily on sponsorships for the first year.

“That’s the reason why we are now on the verge of signing a big investor to sustain the future of Northern Arena. Northern Arena is the only Canadian company that is trying to build something sustainable for esports in the country and that’s the reason why we have the support of Bell Canada and other large Canadian and international companies.”

Esports Insider says: If Northern Arena truly are having financial problems, then excusing them for not paying all of the teams seems a little more understandable. That said, if it’s for any other reason at all then it’s inexcusable. Hopefully this investor comes on board and these problems are ironed out sooner rather than later.